Massive power cuts hit Santiago amid rare heavy snowfall

SANTIAGO – The Chilean capital has been covered with snow, with temperatures dropping to minus six degrees Celsius in rare events in this city.

In the last 27 years there have been only five large snowfalls in Santiago de Chile, although it snows frequently in surrounding communities. Meteorologists say it was the heaviest snowfall in Santiago since 2007.

About 250,000 people were hit by power cuts, officials said, mostly caused by snow-laden trees falling on cables.

One death was reported – of a worker trying to clear ice – and two other people were injured by a fallen power line.

As well as the power cuts, the weather has caused traffic disruption in the capital and several sporting fixtures have been postponed.

The big freeze was not bad news for everyone, however, and thousands of children headed outdoors to build snowmen and throw snowballs.

Forecasters say lighter amounts of snow are still expected to fall.

During winter, the Andes is covered by the snow, a phenomenon rarely seen in the capital city, however, this year the city has witnessed the biggest frost in recent years.

The largest Ski Center in Chile is located just 45 kilometers from Santiago de Chile and is visited by national and foreign tourists that currently go there to enjoy vacations, as there is a school break.